We are registered as a ‘data controller’ under the Data Protection Act as we collect and process personal information about you (this applies to council staff and members of the public).

We process and hold your information in order to provide public services. This notice explains how we use and share your information. Information may be collected on a paper or online form, by telephone, email, CCTV or by a member of our staff, or one of our partners.

Why do we collect information about you?

We need to collect and hold information about you, for a variety of reasons including:

  • the delivery of public services
  • confirming your identity to provide some services
  • contacting you by post, email or telephone
  • understanding your needs to provide the services that you request
  • understanding what we can do for you and inform you of other relevant services and benefits
  • obtaining your opinion about our services
  • updating your customer record
  • helping us to build up a picture of how we are performing at delivering services to you and what services the people of Torbay need
  • processing financial transactions
  • preventing and detecting fraud and corruption in the use of public funds
  • allowing us to undertake statutory functions efficiently and effectively
  • making sure we meet our statutory obligations including those related to diversity and equalities.

We may not be able to provide you with a product or service unless we have enough information, or your permission to use that information.

How we use your information

We will use the information you provide in a manner that conforms to the Data Protection Act. We will endeavour to keep your information accurate, up to date and not keep it for longer than is necessary. In some instances the law sets the length of time information has to be kept.

We will process your information for the following purposes:

  • for any services you request, and to monitor and improve the council’s performance in responding to your request
  • to allow us to be able to communicate with you and provide services and benefits appropriate to your needs
  • to ensure that we meet our legal obligations
  • where necessary for the law enforcement functions
  • to prevent and detect fraud or crime
  • to process financial transactions including grants, payments and benefits involving the council, or where we are acting on behalf of other government bodies, e.g. Department for Work and Pensions
  • to collect tax and monies owed to us
  • where necessary to protect individuals from harm or injury
  • to allow the statistical analysis of data so we can plan the provision of services.

We will not pass any personal data on to third parties, other than those who either process information on our behalf, or because of a legal requirement, and it will only do so, where possible, after we have ensured that sufficient steps have been taken to protect the personal data by the recipient.

We will not disclose any information that you provide ‘in confidence’ to us, to anyone else without your permission, except in the few situations where disclosure is required by law, or where we have good reason to believe that failing to share the information would put someone else at risk. You will be told about this.

If we need to use products or services which processes personal information and are hosted overseas, outside of the European Economic Area, we will always ensure that those hosted services meet our information security requirements and obligations under the Data Protection Act.

How we protect your information

Our aim is not to be intrusive, and we won't ask irrelevant or unnecessary questions. The information you provide will be subject to rigorous measures and procedures to make sure it can't be seen, accessed or disclosed to anyone who shouldn't see it.

We will not keep your information longer than it is needed or where the law states how long this should be kept. We will dispose of paper records or delete any electronic personal information in a secure way.

Your rights

You have the right to request that we stop processing your personal data in relation to any council service. However, this may cause delays or prevent us delivering a service to you. Where possible we will seek to comply with your request but we may be required to hold or process information to comply with a legal requirement.

You can legally ask to see any information that we hold about you, and get a copy. See the Ask to see information about you page.  

We try to ensure that any information we hold about you is correct. There may be times where you find the information we hold is no longer accurate and you have the right to have this corrected.

Please contact us if you wish to exercise any of these rights, or if you have a complaint about how your information has been used.

Ways in which we collect and use information

We may need to pass your information to other people and organisations that provide services on our behalf.  These providers are obliged to keep your details securely, and use them only to fulfil your request. If we wish to pass your sensitive or confidential information onto a third party, we will only do so once we have obtained your consent, unless we are legally required to do so.

We may disclose information to other partners where it is necessary, either to comply with a legal obligation, or where permitted under the Data Protection Act, e.g. where the disclosure is necessary for the purposes of the prevention and / or detection of crime.

Where we need to disclose sensitive or confidential information such as medical details to other partners, we will do so only with your prior explicit consent or where we are legally required to.

We may disclose information when necessary to prevent risk of harm to an individual.

At no time will your information be passed to organisations external to us and our partners, for marketing or sales purposes or for any commercial use without your permission.

This notice provides details of how Torbay Council Public Health Team uses your data. For more general information on how Torbay Council uses your data please refer to the wider privacy notice on this page.

About us

All local authorities have a responsibility to reduce inequalities and improve and protect the health and wellbeing of the population they serve. To help do this, analysts within the Torbay Council Public Health Team use a variety of data from different sources, including anonymised, pseudonymised and personally identifiable data. Data sources include the Office of National Statistics, NHS Digital, Clinical Commissioning Groups, hospitals and health and care providers. This data is analysed to better understand the health and social care needs of the community as well as identify opportunities to improve public service provision in Torbay. This intelligence is then used to develop and inform strategies for local health and care commissioners and providers.

For more information about the Public Health team’s role please see the Public Health page.

Levels of data used

  • Anonymised/de-identified data – is the obscuring of identifiable data items such as name, address and date of birth. This can be achieved by removing person identifiers or using derived fields such as age at point in time as opposed to date of birth.
  • Pseudonymised data – is the obscuring of identifiable data items such as name, address and date of birth; however the data will still retain a level of detail that can allow linkage back to the data’s original state. A pseudonymisation ‘key’ is commonly held by another organisation to reduce the risk of re-linkage unless explicitly required for direct patient/person care. This type of data is the most commonly used by the Torbay Public Health team.
  • Personally identifiable data – is any information that can identify a person. This could be one piece of data for example a person’s name or a collection of information for example name, address and date of birth. Personally identifiable data will only be used where anonymised or pseudonymised data will not suffice. The following are examples of identifiers used by the Torbay Public Health team: NHS number, postcode, date of birth and ethnicity.

What kind of data is stored and/or processed?

The following are examples of the type of national person-level data that the Torbay Public Health Team stores and/or processes:

How is data used?

Torbay Public Health Team predominantly uses personally identifiable, anonymised and pseudonymised data for in-direct patient/person care. This means that data is not directly used for health, care or medical purposes but might be used to inform and improve how healthcare or public services are delivered. For example a range of data sources will be used to identify patterns and trends in birth, mortality and obesity rates highlighting differences between geographic areas, age, sex and other characteristics. This information will then inform the planning and delivery of services which target the people who are most in need of support.

Torbay Public Health Team’s secondary uses of data include the Joint Strategic Needs Assessments  Opens in a new window , Annual Reports  Opens in a new window , research, audits, service management and redesign, as well as commissioning, contract and performance monitoring. For more examples of the intelligence that the Torbay Public Health Team produces using your data please see the South Devon and Torbay Knowledge and Intelligence  Opens in a new window page.

How data is kept secure?

Torbay Council Public Health Team are bound by a number of data sharing agreements which are drawn up to ensure data is received from and shared with organisations in a way that complies with relevant legislation. Your data will be held securely in a database, with permission based access to Public Health analytical staff only, on a secure internal network. It will not be disclosed to anyone not directly connected with the statistical purpose or named in the data sharing agreements, except in the form of non-disclosive statistical tables, without your permission. All outputs will meet the appropriate disclosure control guarantees . This means that no personally identifiable information will be made publicly available and counts of fewer than five will be suppressed (hidden), with secondary suppression where required, to avoid potential identification.

There are occasions where there will be a legal duty to share data, for example to safeguard a person from significant harm or to help prevent or detect a crime.

What is the legal basis for using personally identifiable data?

ONS Births and Primary Care Mortality data – The registration of births and deaths is a legal requirement, and the data is accessed and processed by Torbay local authority through a data access agreement with NHS Digital and the Office of National Statistics. Births information held includes date of birth, sex, birthweight, address of mother, age of mother and marital status. Deaths information includes date of death, place of death, place of birth, address of deceased, cause of death, age, sex, GP, GP practice and last known occupation. Data is supplied under section 42(4) of the Statistics and Registration Services Act (2007) as amended by section 287 of the Health and Social Care Act (2012) and Regulation 3 of the Health Service (Control of Patient Information) Regulations 2002 . The Act specifies that births and deaths information can only be disclosed to health bodies and local authorities if either: it consists of statistics or is for the purpose of producing or analysing statistics; and is for the purpose of the performance of functions in relation to public health.

National Child Measurement Programme (NCMP) data – Delivery of the NCMP is a statutory public health function of local authorities. Access to the NCMP IT system (the system that collects person-level pupil information on height and weight) is controlled at local authority level . Information held includes pupil names, addresses, date of birth, ethnicity, school Unique Reference Number and school postcode. Data is collected and processed under Local Authority (Public Health, Health and Wellbeing Boards and Health Scrutiny) Regulations 2013 .

Can I opt out of my data being used?

You have the right to opt out of the Torbay Public Health Team receiving or holding your personal identifiable information. The process for opting out will depend on the specific data and what programme it relates to. For further information, please contact the Torbay Public Health Team. Details are provided below.

For independent advice, the Information Commissioners Office (ICO)  Opens in a new window is the UK’s independent authority set up to uphold information rights in the public interest, promoting openness by public bodies and data privacy for individuals.

How do I contact the Torbay Council Public Health Team?

You can contact the Torbay Public Health Team using the following contact details:

Torbay Council
Public Health Team (Knowledge and Intelligence)
Town Hall
Castle Circus

Email: statistics@torbay.gov.uk
Tel: 01803 207350

We are required by law to protect the public funds we administer. We may use any of the information you provide to us for the prevention and detection of fraud. We may also share this information with other bodies responsible for auditing, administering public funds, or where undertaking a public function, in order to prevent and detect fraud. This includes the Cabinet Office, the Department for Work and Pensions, other local authorities, HM Revenue and Customs, and the Police.

We participate in the Cabinet Office’s National Fraud Initiative: a data matching exercise to assist in the prevention and detection of fraud. We are required to provide particular sets of data to the Minister for the Cabinet Office for matching for each exercise, as detailed on the  National Fraud Initiative  Opens in a new window  website.

In limited situations we may monitor and record electronic transactions (website, email and telephone conversations). This will only be used to prevent or detect a crime, or investigate or detect the unauthorised use of the telecommunications system and only as permitted by law.

Information may be shared with other organisations for the prevention and detection of crime, this will be shared under Section 17 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 and Section 29(3) of the Data Protection Act 1998.

Data matching may also be used to assist the council in responding to emergencies or major accidents, by allowing us, in conjunction with the emergency services, to identify individuals who may need additional support in the event of e.g. an emergency evacuation.

We will inform you if we record or monitor any telephone calls you make to us. This will be used, to increase your security, for our record keeping of the transaction and for our staff training purposes.

If you email us we may keep a record of your contact and your email address and the email for our record keeping of the transaction. For security reasons we will not include any confidential information about you in any email we send to you. We would also suggest that you keep the amount of confidential information you send to us via email to a minimum and use our secure online services or post.

CCTV systems are installed in a variety of locations around Torbay and in some of our premises used by members of the public, for the purposes of public and staff safety and crime prevention and detection.

In all locations, signs are displayed notifying you that CCTV is in operation and providing details of who to contact for further information about the scheme.

Images captured by CCTV will not be kept for longer than necessary. However, on occasions there may be a need to keep images for longer, for example where a crime is being investigated.

You have the right to see CCTV images of yourself and be provided with a copy of the images. Visit the CCTV page to make a request.

We operate CCTV and disclose in accordance with the codes of practice issued by the Information Commissioner and the Home Office.

Body worn cameras incorporating audio recording are being used by Dog Wardens and other enforcement officers when necessary for operational purposes.

The aim of the body worn camera technology is to:

  • promote the safety of the Officers
  • reduce the potential number of confrontational situations experienced by Officers
  • reduce potential escalation of incidents
  • enhance opportunities for evidence capture

You have the right to see images/audio recording of yourself in accordance with the Data Protection Act and be provided with a copy of the images. See the Ask to see information about you page. 

We will only disclose images and audio to other authorised bodies who intend to use it for the purposes stated above. Images and audio will not be released to the media for entertainment purposes or placed on the internet for public viewing.